Patients with fibromyalgia had median ratings for cognitive function that were significantly worse than in patients with rheumatoid arthritis and reported more symptoms of impaired concentration, according to findings presented at the American College of Rheumatology Annual Meeting.
Researchers provided a questionnaire about symptoms of impaired mental function to 211 patients with either fibromyalgia (FM) or rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The two-sided Mann-Whitney test was used to compare the patients’ responses.
Robert S. Katz, MD
The biggest differences between the two patient groups were seen in distraction by background noise, difficulty concentrating, trouble following conversations, poor reading comprehension and difficulty following directions, according to the researchers.
Other situations in which patients with FM reported significantly more difficulty than patients with RA included inability to retain patterns when adding, subtracting, multiplying or dividing; inability to recall known words; frustration when speaking; difficulty expressing thoughts verbally and other problems with cognition. – by Shirley Pulawski
Katz R, et al. Paper #1112. Presented at: American College of Rheumatology Annual Meeting. Nov. 14-19, 2014; Boston.
Katz has no relevant financial disclosures. Please see the full study for a list of all other authors’ relevant financial disclosures.